It is very difticuit to estimate jazz that we find on this record, applying
limited stylistic categories. The music composed and performed by Czestaw
Gladkowski and Krzysztof Zgraja probably will not satisfy expectations of
orthodoxically oriented fans of "pure" jazz. After all, successive appearances
of the duo at festivals where they won quite a number of prizes - often arouse
controversies. lt commonly happens to all phenomena that do not fit into mental
"files". Still, the two musicians descend from the broadly interpreted jazz
traditions, treated here es an object of relation. Suitable musical education
(Czeslaw Gladkowski is the graduate of the Theory Department of the Katowice
School Of Music, and Krzysztof Zgraja completed studies at the Instrumental and
Composition Departments of the same school) built the foundation for far-away
musical journeys into unexploited or hardly exploited territories.
The present record testifies the stage of development in which the duo achieved
the most important aim: own world of creative ideas connected with original
sound and conception of collective playing. The combination of flute and
double bass, in spite of lack of Tradition, turried out to be extremely
convincing and fuitful. The way to this aim, though not easy and simple, took
them five years.
In some measure, it was the modern electronics used by the musicians that
helped them; nevertheless they do not forget about the huge music potential
that is traditionally inherent in bass and flute.
The two instrumentalists utilize both mainstream and free jazz experiences;
they absorb also classical and avant-garde music heritage. They use their
instruments in the way that was determined by history ("Little thema with
variations"), and support them occasionally with the possibilities of the
modern recording studio ("Departure time"), "Afro-cuban Accents" or "The 4th
Dimension". Thanks to these tricks one may hear often not only a duo also a
quartet or a quintet.
One cannot possibly ignore a very significant source of inspiration for the
artists - that is folklore. Polish jazz so far has issued very few records
that so evidently have preserved the spirit of Polish folk music - in spite of
modern musical language. This folk influence, however, is not merely literary;
take for example "Polimetric" or "Folkmusic". Theonly quotation on the record
is the folk tune from the region of Kurpie, "Get ready my girl" in "Folkmusic".
It is folklore that is common value for the record and makes it an integral
The record that you are now presented will probably find also a response far
outside hermetic jazz circles, for it is a document of broadly comprehended
music tradition, that stands outside the border of the jazz expression.
The stream in which "black" and "white" culture elements meet is an inestimable
value in the sphere of contemporary music. The echoes of the Third Stream
hybrid died away long time ago. The music calls for the values that could be
estimated only by means of musical experience, apart from conventions and
In pieces of Gladkowski and Zgraja (the word "composition" is fully justified,
for these pieces are composed in their generell shape and later filled with
improvisations) one meets an emotion controlled by intellect, expression fitted
into frames of cold deliberation. Owing to this, the final effect is as rich
es our reality. The world of "Alter ego" is different from our old habits, but
no matter what reelings it may evoke, it will surely not leave you insensible.